COVID-19 Cases Identified at Topeka Service Area

The Shawnee County Health Department (SCHD) has identified some COVID-19 cases linked to the Topeka Service Area on the I-70 Turnpike located at mile marker 188 (just East of Topeka). The exposure is specifically designated to the food court and restrooms of the facility. The facility is accessible going east and westbound on the I-70 Turnpike.

 People who have traveled to the food court or used the restrooms of this facility between July 2, 2020, and July 4, 2020, are recommended to contact their primary care provider IF they develop any of the following symptoms within 14 days from the date of their visit:

• fever of 100.4 F or higher

• chills

• rigors

• myalgia (muscle pain or aches)

• malaise

• headache

• sore throat

• lower respiratory illness (cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing)

• new olfactory and taste disorders

• diarrhea

“It is important that the public be aware of this information in case they traveled and stopped at the Turnpike food court during their travels for the holiday weekend,” said Dr. Gianfranco Pezzino, Shawnee County Health Officer. “While the risk is most likely low for infection, it is not zero, and individuals should contact their healthcare provider if they begin to exhibit any symptoms related to COVID-19.”

 As a reminder, human coronaviruses like the one that causes COVID-19 are most commonly spread through coughing and sneezing, personal contact like shaking hands, and touching a surface with the virus and then touching your eyes, nose or mouth. There are simple steps everyone can take to help prevent spreading them:

·         Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.

·         Wear a mask when social and physical distancing is not possible.

·         Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

·         Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

·         Stay home when you are sick and only leave home for essential items.

·         Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.